“Ordinary People, Middle Class, The Rich & Government Officials. All live in Harmony under the Same Sky. To Generate a Utopian Society with Great Dreams.”
Is this some zen koan? A communist manifesto? The message inside a fortune cookie? No, it is the introduction, and the vision, to a 120 page pamphlet proposing a 128-story mega skyscraper covering some five blocks in the heart of Chinatown. Think the World Trade Center meets that crazy hotel in Pyongyang. It is the work of a humble man, retiree Wong San Yan, his gift to the neighborhood he loves.
Curbed sleuth Pete Davies revealed the terrifying looking tower today, and he gives a striking rendition of what is inside:
The imagined building, shaped like a very severe capital “H” surrounded by gardens, will rise to 2,173 feet and contain a gross 15,000,000 square feet serviced by 130 elevators. Up high will be the world’s largest revolving restaurant, doing a complete 360 every 85 minutes and offering views even better than those from atop the new 1 WTC. Floors below will be individually purposed, giving “mixed-use” a whole new meaning. Six stories of parking for 3,000 cars will anchor it all, leading up to a 10-story vertical retail mall with a wide array of restuarants. The next 12 floors will include community spaces, all offered for free (now we’re really in utopia land). Rising over the next 10 floors will be low- and medium-income housing and then another batch of floors offering homes for those displaced by construction of the Zhongshan Center. This place truly has something for everyone, and the wonders only increase as it rises.
In the professional portion, running from floors 56-65, there’ll be a floor for doctors, another for lawyers and so on. Next are twenty stories of luxury, “an excellent living choice for successful people.” Above that: the Galactic Hotel, 10-stories of hospitality, not to be confused with the loftier 5-story “Super-Galactic Hotel” up on the 106th to 110th floors, where the crazy rich will find 8-star “ultra-luxurious service.” On top of it all, there’s still room for another fifteen floors where “officials and successful businessmen from the world over” can buy a condo or ten.”
If the penthouse at 432 Park is $85 million, what would this place cost? Then again, who would want to live in such a severe looking building.
The pamphlet accompanying is a work of sheer old-man genius, so perfectly wrought it could be some sort of over-the-top parody meant to lampoon the New York real estate market and the Chinatown community. Unfortunately, it appears to be legit, in which case it is the greatest example of daydream doodlings and architectural madness The Observer has ever seen.